Are You Smarter Than a Workers’ Compensation Attorney?

As we all know, to be compensable under Ohio Workers' Compensation law an injury must have occurred "in the course and scope of employment".  Both parts of the test must be met. The Ohio Supreme Court developed a two part approach to the course and scope of employment analysis. To determine whether an injury occurred … Continue reading Are You Smarter Than a Workers’ Compensation Attorney?

Ohio’s BWC Budget Bill Has Finally Passed. What’s Changed? Not Much.

Legislation passed earlier this year by the Ohio House of Representatives funding the Bureau of Workers' Compensation also included a number of substantive changes to Ohio's Workers' Compensation laws.  Those changes included: providing coverage for First Responders with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder even in the absence of a physical injury; amending the First Report of Injury … Continue reading Ohio’s BWC Budget Bill Has Finally Passed. What’s Changed? Not Much.

PTSD Claims for First Responders: Opening Pandora’s Box?

Ohio law has long held that employees are not covered under the workers' compensation system for mental conditions that do not arise from a physical injury.  Provisions in the  BWC budget bill (Sub. H. B. No. 80-passed by the Ohio House on June 5, 2019) could change that.  If Ohio legislators watch "Tomb Raider: The … Continue reading PTSD Claims for First Responders: Opening Pandora’s Box?

You Can’t Get Back on Temporary Total Disability By Mowing the Grass and Picking Up Trash in Your Yard, Says the Ohio Supreme Court

A case decided on April 9, 2019 by the Ohio Supreme Court dealt with an injured worker who retired; claimed that she re-entered the workforce by "working" on her farm; had surgery; and then requested temporary total disability ("TTD") compensation.  Before we get into the specifics of the case, let's do a brief rundown of … Continue reading You Can’t Get Back on Temporary Total Disability By Mowing the Grass and Picking Up Trash in Your Yard, Says the Ohio Supreme Court

Suicide Levels for U.S. Workers are up 34 Percent. What Can Employers Do To Help?

This post was sparked by some recent news events, and a podcast I follow.  Of course, given the title of this blog, I'll have to add my workers' compensation law spin on it at the end.  You might think that workers' compensation coverage does not apply to suicides, but that is not always the case.  … Continue reading Suicide Levels for U.S. Workers are up 34 Percent. What Can Employers Do To Help?

Are the Industrial Commission’s Rule Changes for 2019 Exciting?

That short answer is no.  Not even remotely.  But I read them anyway, just in case.  In order to spare you the pain, here are the highlights. As part of its regular rule review process, the Industrial Commission amended ten of its administrative rules, effective February 1, 2019.  The ten rules that were amended covered: … Continue reading Are the Industrial Commission’s Rule Changes for 2019 Exciting?

Will Ohio’s New Standard Medical Release Form Stand Up to HIPAA Scrutiny?

Several weeks ago, I posted about the new standard medical release form that all Ohio providers are required to honor.   As I mentioned in that post, pursuant to Ohio Administrative Code Section 5160-1-32.1, effective February 3, 2019, all Ohio providers must honor a standard authorization form. You can find a link to a copy of … Continue reading Will Ohio’s New Standard Medical Release Form Stand Up to HIPAA Scrutiny?

Can Someone Receive Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Injuries Sustained in a Fight?

As you are probably aware, in order for an injury to be covered by workers’ compensation, there must be a causal relationship between the injuries and the employee’s job duties.  Specifically, Ohio courts require both that the injury occur “In the Course” of Employment ( looking at the time, place, and circumstances of the accident); … Continue reading Can Someone Receive Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Injuries Sustained in a Fight?

What You Need to Know about Drug Testing in Workers’ Compensation Claims

Under Ohio law, injuries sustained as the result of drug or alcohol use are not covered under the workers’ compensation system.  The Ohio legislature also provided a very specific set of circumstances in which it is presumed that a workplace accident was the result of alcohol or drug use. Unfortunately, the Code section itself, Ohio … Continue reading What You Need to Know about Drug Testing in Workers’ Compensation Claims

New Study Links Opioids to Workers’ Compensation Claims

A study published last month in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that workers’ compensation claimants have a high proportion of persistent opioid use.  A link to the study can be found here. The report found that 30 percent of injured workers prescribed opioids are still taking them 3 months after their injuries; … Continue reading New Study Links Opioids to Workers’ Compensation Claims